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Fine Art/Sistine Chapel Restoration


I'm working on a novel which takes place in 1991 (Rome, Itlay) and would like to know if there were visitors allowed in the Sistine Chapel at that time.  I know that the 14 year cleaning project of Michelangelo's frescoes began in 1980 and was completed in 1994. It seems to me that 14 years (multiplied by 3 million visitors a year!) would be an incredibly long time to close one of the world's greatest masterpieces from public viewing.
I hope you can help me....Thanks.

Dear Dina, I have a fine book on the Chapel restoration, and there is no mention of visitors. I rather doubt they allowed vistors because of the scaffolding, chemicals, and Japanese film crew. One of the authors of my book is still on a lecture tour. John O'Malley, S.J., Professor of Church History, Weston School of Theology, Cambridge. You can find him on the internet. Another author was Pierluigi De Vecchi, Professor of Art History, Universita' Statale of Milan.

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Daniel A. Hynes


Collecting, buying, selling, identifying, and caring for paintings, drawings,and watercolors (19th and early 20th century American and European). No prints, contemporary art, or works executed after 1940.


35 years as a fine art dealer, including 3 years as a gallery director. Also was art expert for Leslie Hindman's Auctioneers, and for Dunning's Auction.

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